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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Racial profiling still alive and well in Bristol

If you need any clue on why African-Americans do not trust the police departments, one only need to read this article. This is just another example of something that African-Americans have been saying for years (to the ignorance of white) which is racial profiling is a common protice among police officers in many towns in Connecticut (and the nation).

From the Hartford Courant
Just as city leaders began working to heal wounds from allegations of a secret, racist radio station run by two police officers, the NAACP on Tuesday accused the police department of racial profiling in the city's West End.

"We have very, very grave concerns about what is going on in the Bristol community," Scot X. Esdaile, president of the Connecticut NAACP, told officials at the regular meeting of the city's police board.


Standing before the audience Tuesday night, Esdaile said at least two Bristol police officers have privately told him they were ordered to conduct racial profiling in the West End, a working-class neighborhood.

The allegation drew denials from the police union and embattled Police Chief John DiVenere.

"No. I can categorically deny that whole thing," union President Ken Gallup said. "The department is really coming in for a bashing right now."

DiVenere confirmed that he ordered strict enforcement in the West End because of crime complaints from residents, but he emphasized that it absolutely wasn't aimed at any racial group.

"Absolutely not, of course not. I find it hard to believe anyone would say that, or that any officer would follow an illegal order," DiVenere said.

Esdaile refused to identify the officers who spoke with him, and would not provide details of their accounts or name the official who allegedly ordered racial profiling.

"I know what I'm talking about. It came from the top," Esdaile told reporters during a break in the police board meeting. "I said the top. You take it from there."

Addressing the board, he said DiVenere must explain why some police officers were still making racist broadcasts on a pirate FM station years after the chief first heard rumors that it was happening.

"We want to know just what measures he took to be sure this was eradicated," Esdaile said. "There are just three answers: Incompetency, they just didn't care, or `I agree with everything that's going on.'"

DiVenere has said he ordered Sgt. Richard Valentine to "shut it down" after hearing rumors several years ago of unlicensed broadcasts from his home. DiVenere said he couldn't do more because no other officers would verify the rumors.

The issue explosively resurfaced last week, when the NAACP and state Rep. Roger Michele, D-Bristol, held a press conference to accuse Valentine and Capt. Daniel Britt of being involved in WNFR. The NAACP identified the unlicensed call letters as Nigger-Free Radio. Just hours after that story became public, Valentine put in for immediate retirement and Britt was put on administrative leave. Neither has publicly answered the allegation.
Crazy, just crazy.

African-American have been complaining about things like this going on in Connecticut for YEARS and nothing gets done. Hand a video camera to a African-American and tell him to drive his car to Avon after dark and watch what happens and the situation in Bristol isn't any different.

Think about this when African-Americans say that if the hurricane hit an area populated by a majority of whites, it would of recieved assistance so fast, it would make your head spin. Racism is the ugly scar on this country that we as a nation will never fully acknowledge or address and until we do somehting (or even admits that it exosts) you'll hear more stories like this happening in liberal Connecticut.